Here at gambling.ie we have tracked and reported on the success of online gambling ever since the first online sports gambling sites were developed and introduced by the big high street bookmakers. One of the most significant reasons for the increasing popularity of sports gambling online was the much greater range of sports and sporting events featured on the internet gambling sites compared to the limited gambling options available in most of the high street betting shops. The same situation was also very obvious when the sports gambling site operators began to add a few gambling games to their established sites, which in turn led to what we now call online casino gambling. Again the most obvious difference between playing gambling games online and playing at a real casino for instance was the huge range of games increasingly available at all of the online casino gambling sites. Not only were all the traditional casino gambling games available to play online, but the site operators and the casino software designers quickly introduced a whole range of numbers games based on the ever popular game of bingo. Easy access to already popular gambling games such as roulette and blackjack was clearly an attractive prospect for regular visitors to our real casinos, so when the thousands of bingo fans also found that there was a whole range of new gambling games available online all based on their favourite game, there was already a large potential fan base for playing gambling games online. The bookmakers who first introduced gambling games to their online sports gambling sites were not slow to recognise that potential audience, and they quickly began to introduce more and more new games and exciting new ways to enjoy them. Clearly one of the most obvious ways to attract an existing group of gaming enthusiasts was to expand the range of traditional casino gambling games they offered on their sites. In Ireland very few of our real casinos had the floor space available to offer their customers the opportunity to play a full range of traditional gambling games, and most were only able to feature roulette and blackjack on a regular basis. The online casino gambling sites however had no such space restrictions, so they were able to offer a full range of traditional casino games including popular games such as backgammon and baccarat both of which were commonly featured in casinos on the continent but rarely if ever in Ireland. The online casino gambling sites were even able to offer us the opportunity to try our hand at one of the most popular casino games in America, the game of craps. For any gambling enthusiast who enjoyed the more traditional casino gambling games, the opportunity to play all these other traditional games was clearly a very attractive proposition. We have already commented on how the increasing range of online numbers games had created a similar level of attraction among the existing fans of the game of bingo, but although both of these forms of gambling games were important in the development of online casino gambling it was the slots games which undoubtedly had the greatest effect in the long run. When we look at the range of gambling games featured on almost every online casino gambling site, the majority of those games are always slots games and video slots in various forms.
The attraction of slots games is of course that they are easy to play, generally require no particular skill and of course can be played for very small stakes at most online casino gambling sites. Most observers, even those die hard traditionalists who prefer the traditional casino gambling games would acknowledge that it is primarily the huge range of online slots games which has driven the enormous success of online casino gambling. It is also the need for more and more original and exciting slots and video slots which has created what is now one of the most important elements of the online casino gambling sector, the casino software. Every internet site requires efficient and secure operating software to display their product and handle the financial aspects of the site, but the software designers who supply the software necessary to operate an online casino gambling site are also required to create most of the gambling games featured on the site. The traditional gambling games such as roulette, blackjack and craps all require the software necessary to display the games attractively on our screens, but the modern online slots games featured on most casino gambling sites are a far cry from the simple three reel slot machines many of us used to play on holiday on the pier or in one of the seaside arcades. The online slots games often have as many as five reels with multiple winning lines for every spin. There are now even slots games which use falling blocks instead of reels to display the winning combinations. When it comes to which online casino gambling site most people select it is the range of available slots games which tends to be the primary factor in that decision, so that is also where the individual site operators attempt to compete with their rivals. Licensing agreements with the big media organisations which own the copyright to major films and popular cartoon characters have therefore become extremely important for the casino software companies and the site operators because many of the slots they feature are themed on popular films and comics. All the big online gambling sites operated by the major bookmakers now offer over two hundred different gambling games on their sites, most of which are clearly slots and video slots in various forms, but we now also have access to a number of smaller specialist online casino gambling sites all of which have introduced a new range of slots games for our enjoyment. We have progressed from a situation where the online casino gambling sector was dominated by a few casino software companies and online casino gambling sites to a sector with a much greater choice than ever before.